Tests Show Coliform Bacteria
in Kent's Lake/Tushar
Our water system recently violated a drinking water standard. Although this is not an emergency, as our customers, you have a right to know what happened, what you should do, and what we are doing to correct this situation.
We routinely monitor for the presence of drinking water contaminants. We took 9 samples for coliform bacteria during July. 5 or 56% of those samples showed the presence of coliform bacteria. The standard is that no more than [1 sample per month/5 percent of our samples] may do so.
What should I do?
You do not need to boil your water or take other corrective actions. However, if you have specific health concerns, consult your doctor.
People with severely compromised immune systems, infants, and some elderly may be at increased risk. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. General guidelines on ways to lessen the risk of infection by microbes are available from EPAs Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1 (800) 426-4791.
What does this mean?
This is not an emergency. If it had been you would have been notified immediately. Total coliform bacteria are generally not harmful themselves. Coliforms are bacteria which are naturally present in the environment and are used as an indicator that other, potentially-harmful, bacteria may be present. Coliforms were found in more samples than allowed and this was a warning of potential problems.
Usually, coliforms are a sign that there could be a problem with the treatment or distribution system (pipes). Whenever we detect coliform bacteria in any sample, we do follow-up testing to see if other bacteria of greater concern, such as fecal coliform or E. coli, are present. We did not find any of these bacteria in our subsequent testing. If we had, we would have notified you immediately. However, we are still finding coliforms in the drinking water.
What happened? What is being done?
The routine bacteriological water sample for Kent's Lake and Tushar Campgrounds for the Month of July was coliform positive. Of the 4 subsequent repeat samples on July 20, one was coliform positive. Four more repeats were taken on July 26 and 3 of the samples were positive. The 12 repeats could not be taken before the end of July and were taken on August 1, 2011. These 12 repeats were coliform negative and were taken after the installation of the chlorinator noted in the following paragraph.
During the period of time between each set of samples, the entire water system from the spring and throughout the distribution system was chlorinated. The reoccurring coliform positive samples indicate that bacteria is continually entering the system, most likely from the infiltration of tree roots into the system or a break in the pipes. The location of the source of bacteria has not been determined, but we will continue to try and isolate the source of contamination. What has been done, in the meantime, is the installation of a hypo chlorinator that injects chlorine into the system to neutralize the bacteria.
We are still detecting coliform bacteria. We will inform you when our sampling shows that no bacteria are present. We anticipate resolving the problem within the next calendar year.
For more information, please contact Von Gillies at 435 896-1089 or Beaver Ranger District, PO Box E, Beaver, UT 84713.
This notice is being sent to you by Beaver Ranger District Water System ID#: _01008_. Date distributed: August 8, 2011.
Published in The Richfield Reaper Aug. 10, 2011. UPAXLP